Private Label Poses Threat To Food Makers -- Market Talk

08:47 ET - Bernstein analyst Alexia Howard says store brands have gained market share in recent years, and that threat is getting more serious. "Simply put, private label products are becoming relatively cheaper than branded products. This expanding price gap, coupled with the improving private label quality, presents a looming threat to food manufacturers," she says. Shoppers are much less likely to choose store brands for some items, like chocolate, whereas they often will for commoditized goods like chicken or cheese. That puts Mondelez and Hershey in a good position but is hurting Tyson's chicken, Kraft Heinz's cheese, and Smucker's Jif peanut butter. "We interpret this as evidence of weak brand loyalty as consumers are willing to trade down to cheaper alternatives," Howard said. (


Beyond Meat Stock Is Falling After an Analyst Warned That Competition Could Cap Gains --

Beyond Meat stock fell more than 3% Monday morning because another Wall Street analyst thinks investors should wait to own the highflying startup.

Monday's stock price levels are the lowest for Beyond Meat shares (ticker: BYND) since July. Wells Fargo sees two problems for the maker of alternative meat: valuation and new competition.




Early Blizzard Wallops Vulnerable Crops

Farmers who delayed planting in waterlogged fields this spring face a new threat as they race to harvest their crops: snow.

Heavy snowfall and high winds over the past several days buffeted northern Farm Belt states where many farmers faced historic planting delays last spring. The early blizzard bookended a trying year for U.S. farmers. Crop prices generally remain under pressure because of high supplies and slackened demand as a result of the U.S.-China trade war. And many crops now threatened by a freeze are immature because they were planted so late.


DoorDash Pushes into Virtual Kitchens -- Market Talk

10:00 ET - DoorDash opens its first shared restaurant space for online ordering in Redwood City, Calif., the latest move for the fast-growing goods delivery company. Restaurants who sign up to use the space will be able to make their food there and deliver it in seven markets with DoorDash drivers. More investors are putting money into virtual kitchens, including those associated with Uber and Google Ventures. The spaces are cheaper than running a sit-down restaurant, but the profitability of the new sector remains debatable. (; @heatherhaddon)




Cattle Ends Session Higher, Hogs Slip -- Market Talk

15:39 ET - Livestock futures finish mixed with December live cattle futures up 1.2% at $1.13450 per pound-- the highest close for the contract since Aug. 6. Meanwhile, December hog futures close down 0.7% to 69.125 cents per pound. Livestock traders say they're skeptical a partial deal between the US and China will result in higher meat demand. "CBOT traders want to see new/large Chinese demand to have confidence in Friday's Phase 1 Trade Deal announced between the US and China," says AgResource. "The markets are skeptical on trade deals that are not inked as both sides can move the goalposts." (; @kirkmaltais)



Estimated U.S. Pork Packer Margin Index - Oct 14 
Source: USDA, based on Wall Street Journal calculations 
All figures are on a per-head basis. 
Date     Standard Margin       Estimated margin 
         Operating Index         at vertically - 
                             integrated operations 
Oct 14       +$ 35.65            +$ 36.74 
Oct 10       +$ 37.45            +$ 35.73 
Oct 9        +$ 36.29            +$ 33.66 
* Based on Iowa State University's latest estimated cost of production. 
A positive number indicates a processing margin above the cost of 
production of the animals. 
This report compares the USDA's latest beef carcass composite 
values as a percentage of their respective year-ago prices. 
          For Today             Choice  107.2 
      (Percent of Year-Ago)     Select   98.5 
USDA Boxed Beef, Pork Reports 

Wholesale choice-grade beef prices Monday rose $1.56 per hundred pounds, to $217.22, according to the USDA. Select-grade prices rose 65 cents per hundred pounds, to $189.33. The total load count was 82. Wholesale pork prices rose 47 cents, to $77.49 a hundred pounds, based on Omaha, Neb., price quotes.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 14, 2019 17:11 ET (21:11 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2019 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.